Updated July 22 2017
After a thrilling walk-off victory over High Point-Thomasville on Thursday night, Forest City (24-14, 5-6) traveled to Martinsville to take on the Mustangs for the final time this season.
The Owls jumped on the Mustangs (18-25, 4-12) early, scoring a pair of runs in the 2nd off of Martinsville starting pitcher John Weber (Texas).
A two-run homerun (2) by AJ Wright (UMBC) put the Owls on top 2-0 in the second frame, allowing some early breathing room for Forest City staring pitcher Tyler Lawson (Long Beach State).
Martinsville scored an unearned run in the bottom half of the 2nd, as an RBI sacrifice fly by Muta Crusoe (Lincoln Memorial) brought in Kyle Wilkie (Clemson) to make it 2-1.
In the 3rd, the Mustangs took a lead they would never relinquish. Martinsville put up three runs in the stanza, starting with an RBI single by Wilkie to tie the game at 2-2.
Next, an RBI triple by Andres Sosa (Texas) put Martinsville on top 3-2. Moments later, Sosa came in to score on a balk by Lawson on the mound to give the Mustangs a 4-2 lead. The Owls were called for three balks throughout the night.
In the 4th, Forest City managed to get one run back. Ryan Kemp (Middle Tennessee State) drove in Collin Dupree (Montevallo) on an error to bring the Owls back within one run.
It stayed a one run game for the next few innings, as both starting pitchers settled in on the mound.
In the 7th, Lawson’s day came to an end on the mound as he made way for reliever Michael Davis (Western Carolina).
The Mustangs blew the game open in the inning, scoring three more runs, all with two outs, and taking a commanding 7-3 lead.
The scoring started with another balk call that brought in a run for Martinsville. Next, an RBI single by Lee Sponseller (Ohio Dominican) made it 6-3. Finally, Wilkie singled in Sponseller to score, capping off the teams second three run frame of the contest.
In the 8th, Forest City made it interesting once again, as the Owls managed three straight hits to start off the inning.
Wright led off the inning with a triple to deep right, and came in to score on a single by Dupree moments after.
Two batters later, Chase Barbary (Western Carolina) brought in another run for the Owls as he grounded into a 5-4-3 double play. Forest City stranded a runner at second as the inning came to an end.
In the 9th, Martinsville reliever Connor Riley (Long Beach State) was called upon to slam the door on the Owls. Forest City brought the tying run to the plate with only one out, but Riley struck out the final two men he faced to end the game.
The loss is Forest City’s fourth in the last five games, their worst stretch in the 2017 campaign.
The Owls are back in action tomorrow as they take on the Lexington County Blowfish on the road at 7:05 p.m. You can catch all the action live on the Forest City Owls Radio Network.
To find out more about 2017 or 2018 Owls Season Tickets, please contact the Owls Office at 828-245-0000 or visit the website at www.forestcitybaseball.com.
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